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Discussion Starter #1
Is there a Sorento Club in the Philippines? If not, would other Sorento owners be interested in getting together for some offroad adventure? I've got a Sorento EX V6 and have taken it offroad in Quezon and Batangas a couple of times. Sure would be nice to have company.
 

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I'm not sure if there is a Sorento club, but there are various 4WD groups out there - I've joined some a few times because I also own a heavily modified '92 Daihatsu Feroza. I grew up in Batangas so it was a handy vehicle (had it since my college days). I'll check out the clubs out there if some are Sorento owners (most of the 4WD enthusiasts I know either have a Pajero or an LC).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
jgotangco: Thanks. Clearly, there's not enough Sorentos around to have enough owners wanting to form a club. I'll take your advise and check out the other clubs. I've been to San Juan (and beyond, all the way to the coastline -- forget the name of the place) and saw a few ideal sites for off-roading. In fact, I ventured on one (going up the mountain) but chickened out after about half an hour because I was by my lonesome.

Menph: Check out the following sites where I posted some of my observations about the Sorento plus other people's comments, including those about competition:

http://www.kia-forums.com/t2795-sorento-mo...-suv-winner.htm

http://4x4ph.com/forum/index.php?act=ST&f=3&t=2727

http://4x4ph.com/forum/index.php?act=ST&f=3&t=2784

http://4x4ph.com/forum/index.php?act=ST&f=4&t=2455

I am 99.9% satisfied with my Sorento. The remaining .01% is that of the gas consumption, although it has greatly improved since my last tune-up (at 10,000kms).

If you're getting the diesel version, then that .01% should not be an issue for you. The Sorento's a dream for me, because I get a big-SUV ride without the big SUV size, perfect for my already fullhouse garage.

At its price, you get more elegant (and better fit) interiors, really hot exterior looks, big, macho tires, totally awesome engines (3.5V6 or the 2.5CrDi are both powerful), low-range gearing (separates true offroaders from pseudo/wanna-be softroaders), ABS/LSD (standard, indispensable), 4wheel disk brakes, altimeter/temp/barometer instrumentation, body-on-frame ruggedness, solid axle rear for hardcore offroading, leather seats, and decent on-road ride (not the greatest, but then again, neither has the Patrols nor the previous generation Pajeros).

20,000kms on my odometer and my only complaint was a tiny squeak from, I suspect, the front suspension, after I kinda banged up the Sorento over Quirino highway without slowing down over mooncraters. Mysteriously, the squeak went away once I got back to Manila.

Most impressive about the Sorento is its very quiet ride. A number of friends (including a car mechanic) was surprised when I would pull out from the driveway because they thought I hadn't started up the engine yet. Of course, the diesel probably wouldn't be as quiet, but, it just highlights the really quiet cabin of the Sorento.

Just yesterday, I saw a Sorento on EDSA, with its (I suppose) owner sitting at the rear being driven by her chauffeur. First off, the Sorento's not for being driven around. From behind, I saw li'l old owner-lady bouncing up and down inside as it went over the rutted roads just north of the Buendia pass. I suspect, the Sorento had really filled-up tires and, since it was practically empty, bouncing merrily along its way, tossing the hapless lady-owner-who-preferred-to-be-chauffeur-driven in the rear seat. That's not what a Sorento is for.

If you're after a family vehicle and have no aspirations whatsoever to brave the lunar landscape outside of Manila, you should opt for a CRV or an Escape/Tribute. Even an X Trail (ugly interiors). If, on the other hand, you intend to venture out to places like Quezon or Aurora or Bicol, then the Sorento is the better deal, if only because you wouldn't have to worry so much about losing a trailing arm or other parts of the suspension when rough-riding it over potholes. Again, surprisingly, even after 20,000kms of extreme torture, my Sorento remains as quiet as the day I first got it. No rattles, no squeaks, no pings, no blogs.

To date, my Sorento remains a looker; not a few other SUVS trail me from behind sizing me up. People have approached me about it; people in the carwash, especially, crowd around it.

Good luck on your Sorento and let's hope you get one as spanking great as mine. Some of the sites I posted above also discuss Sorento defects (all in other countries) and you just might want to go over them so there will be no surprises.

For me, though, my 7 month old, 20,000km Sorento has been one great ride!

Have fun!
 

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lol I actually agree on the use of such SUVs. These things were made for driving under all conditions and not for passengers. Before I had my Picanto, my wife and child would ride in my Feroza and would always complain about the bouncy ride - well all 4WDs are like that in the first place. Problem is that people perceive buying a huge SUV as a status symbol and not for passenger convenience.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
jgotangco: Hope to bump into you one of these days, metaphorically speaking. How's your Picanto performing? I was checking out old car mags and came across a UK head-to-head comparo of 10 subcompacts, including models from Spanish Seat, Fiat, Suzuki, Rover, Daihatsu, etc., and, guess, what? The Picanto was no. 1! It had, however, a 1,000 cc engine instead of the 1.100 cc that the local Picanto seems to have. Is it the same with yours?

A cousin's looking at the PIcanto, and, checking the C! magazine, the auto version listed at P375,000. In today's buy & sell, a brand new Picanto is priced at 400,000 something. Do you know how much it sells for now? I know Kia recently upped their prices (the Sorento's, for instance, went up from P1,380,000 last June04 to P1,520,000 last November04), could this be the reason for the differecne?
 

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Hey Swim!

Just bought my SorentoEX and have been extremely happy with it. It's really hot. I get stares wherever I go. Going to Subic yesterday, this Prado started tailgating me. I hit the pedal and passed several cars including an X-Trail 2.5 who gave me a hard time -- was hugging the lane. He tried to do the same but his diesel engine's no match for the Sorento's V6, no matter if its CDI or whatever. The XTrail couldn't even catch up.

This Sorento's making me a maniac on the road. Can't wait to see how it performs offroad. Count me in if you want to start a Sorento club in the PHilippines. I'm based in Alabang, we can meet up on weekends or after 6 during weekdays. I'm 25 yrs old and work in Makati.

I've done so offroading a few years back with a Strada, but with the Sorento, I expect it will be a different expereince.

BTW, do you know shops where I can accessorize my Sorento? The dealers don't have any.
 

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Would be interested in an off-roading club as well. As soon as I get my Sorento! It's been like pulling teeth trying to get one, and the dealers here in Manila have been very, very bad. I've been waiting since December 2004 for my CRDi, and I'm still waiting.

Anybody have any feedback on when the real delivery date is going to be? First it was mid-Jan, then end-Jan, then end-Feb, and now the last I heard is April. And I wonder if any more price hikes will happen between now and then, as the price has already gone up twice.

Not directly related, but has anyone seen that post on whether the grade of diesel we have here will cause problems with the CRDi engine? Anybody know the answer? Thanks!
 

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Btw, SorentoEX, have heard that some accessories will be coming in soon, although I have no idea what those are. I think Q Av have some grilles, not that I'm plugging those, since they tried to sell me those to "prioritize" me in the waiting list for the CRDi.

I did get an initial quote on accessories from Pasong Tamo, but they seemed to me overpriced. Might be good to surf this forum for aftermarket accessories that, while not Kia, will fit the Sorento, such as roof rails, cargo mats, etc. Even fog lamps, I know I've seen some people post how they did it themselves.

Online stores might be able to get you some good deals. Try
http://www.suvxccessory.com/
http://www.customsorento.tk/

The guy who runs the customsorento site has actually replied to a couple of my queries and says he can ship an accessory like a grille to the Philippines for $30, and that he'll match any competitor's price. Even for the $200 grilles, plus shipping and I'm not sure how much for customs, it'll probably still be better than say getting a P25k grille here, and you'll have more choices.
 

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Sorento EX3500V6, LC80, Mitsu Space Gr
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Discussion Starter #10
Monster: Since I'm a relatively new Kia user (only the Sorento for me), I have been happy with aftersales. Signet Boni has been very helpful with my new-kia-owner angsts (I thought i was leaking oil while in San Pablo City after an oil change and had to turn back to Signet -- turns out it was leftover oil that clung to a crossmember causing the backend spray -- Signet's Bong Navarro nursed me through the anxious hours I was driving back).

Kia Batangas is also one hospitable and helpful dealer. Kia Commonwealth accommodated my purchase of an air filter, even though they hadn't unloaded their fresh delivery that day (had to open up boxes of new deliveries just to get my air filter).

All in all, Kia dealers seem really helpful with Sorento owners. I don't know if it extends to Picanto and Pride owners as well, but I seem to have always been accorded royal treatment in these 3 dealerships. An awful experience was with Kia Quezon Ave, and I'd rather not get into the details. Let's just say I'd avoid that dealership with a 100 foot pole.

An important plus for Kia Sorento owners in the Philippines is this: While dealerships may not be in all the cities in the country, Kia parts are available in every auto shop. At a pinch, my favorite Kia serviceman told me I could use a Kia Pride oil filter to replace the Sorento's, considering it has the same bore and fits perfectly. Oil and plugs are pretty standard. I'm just not sure about the airfilter. In terms of regular maintenance, Sorentos should be an easy task. Long-term parts such as brake pads, air filters, etc., are available at Kia dealers (you can order a couple as spares if you live in the boonies.).

About the grille, I was offered the Euro/Korean version of the grille by this Kia guy who knows of an auto shop at the Ortigas CBD, for P9,500. I haven't followed up on that lead yet; need to replace my grille cause I kinda banged it up. I'm looking for a 5,000 lb rated hitch (the official Kia hitch is for 3500lbs) since I need to tow my jetski, especially this summer, but am still looking at options. If I don't find one, I'll order one through my bro in the US; probably safer than ordering through the mail or online.

As for CRDi models being scarce, you're not the only one still waiting. Check out reviews on the Sorento, and it will tell you that even in the US, customers are waiting in line for their units. Turns out, Kia can't keep up with the demand worldwide and is now thinking of manufacturing it in the US (all Sorentos are, as yet, made in Korea, with different specs for different regions).

The CrDis are a hit in Europe, which is where most of the units are shipped to (and is only second to Korea in terms of demand for these diesels). I've seen a few diesels around, and, personally, even prefer the single color look sans body cladding. I checked one out last week. The only difference in interior is its non-leather upholstery (cloth) and the absence of the multi-function overhead console.

So patience, dear grasshopper, your CrDi is on the way. Just breathe in and out a couple of times each time you feel this strong yearning for your Sorento. Then come back to this site and let's us Sorento owners get together to organize a support group-- something like Alcoholics Anonymous. We'd need that kind of group to help us control our Sorento additions and obsessions. Once hooked on the Sorento, there's seems to be no cure.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hey SorentoEX, Welcome to the wonderful world of the Sorento. Glad to hear you love your new wheels. I usually have my "get lost day" with my Sorento during weekends, and you're welcome to come along. I usually pick medium-difficulty trails and relatively safe ones. Just the other weekend, together with a couple of buddies (one was on a Vitara, the other on a Feroza), we went up a trail that started at Cavinti, Laguna and came out near the Lake. We went through some private property (with dispensation) but went over some pretty bouldery stuff. NOthing the Sorento could'nt handle, of course. Took us pretty much a good part of the day.

Early part of March, we're planning to hit the trail in the Lobo, Batangas area. Another buddy, Alex, knows some "challenging" trails there (so he tells me, of course, he's on an Land Cruiser -- hope the Sorento can keep up -- I'll find out soon enough). A lot of offroaders choose the easy path by going offroad in trails and tracks tried and tested by many other offroaders before them. We choose to go original and really do some exploring.

Alex is a veteran and scouts the trail way before we even hit it, just to make sure. He's also got a couple of veteran spotters who tag along for the really tough drives. I have faith in him, so, if I am willing to exercise my Sorento on his trails, you might want to consider coming along for the ride.

One thing's for sure, Alex's trails are no place for Xtrails and Escapes. And, just for the record, after quite a bit of offroading, my Sorento's still relatively unscathed and intact, except for the nose (repair scheduled for March together with the replacement of the grill).

In my previous post, I wrote about this autoshop in Ortigas (where the carnival/fair used to be -- forget the name). Monster also mentioned a couple.

See you on the trails.
 

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Thanks for the feedback, Swim. I'm not even a Sorento owner yet and already I'm pretty hooked. I did like the ride A LOT, I love the way the interior was thought-out, and I'm actually not so much a fan of leather interiors, so the CRDi is perfect. Even the single body look.

I guess the waiting would be more bearable if I didn't feel like I was being played. Like in the case of Pasong Tamo, I'd already told them to reserve for me, two in fact. Asked what they needed, either a downpayment of PO, and the salesman told me it was covered, he'd take care of it. In the end, he made me bid for it, against two other buyers, he told me.

Would you mind PMing me about your Quezon Avenue experience? Would really like to know as I have also been dealing with them on and off, and so far it hasn't been good either.

It is a bit heartening to hear about aftersales support, though. I'm glad to hear also that there are a lot of non-dealer choices as well. Do let me know once you remember the name of that place in Ortigas.
 

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Let me throw in my recommendation for the Sorento. As a half-year owner of one, it is the one of the most comfortable, rugged, powerful and the smoothest vehicle this side of the Pacific I've had the opportunity to ride on. After riding Pajeros, Terranos and Grand Vitara for the last 7 years, I can say that with confidence.

I've also happy with my dealer - they've taken the effort to get my unit serviced ASAP and absolutely no complaints with my unit.
 

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Ha ha, you guys are making the wait more excruciating! But from the moment I saw the Sorento, and when I finally got to test drive it, I knew I'd found the SUV I'd been looking for (and I've tried a lot, too).

Glad to know we're going to be well taken care of, by the dealers, and by fellow enthusiasts, when we finally join the club of those-who-own-and-love-Sorentos.

SorentoEX -- which dealer did you go to? Am working on my own private list of dealers I can go to for after-sales service, and a blacklist of those that I will never go to again, and hopefully neither will any of you guys, lest you be afforded the same crap treatment.

Swim -- thanks for the PM; will definitely drop you a line when it's explorin' time. :D
 

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Hi! We can convert your manual side mirrors ( Sorento LX,Picanto, Rio, etc.) to electronic power side mirrors at a very affordable price. We also have the Original Fender Lights for the Sorento and Picanto and we can install it for you. For the Sorento LX, we have the aftermarket Foglights.I've attached some pictures of the Sorento with the original fender lights, converted power side mirror, foglights. If interested, just call 4931871, 5324255, 09178962528 and look for abdel.
 

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